Unusual temples in India

Unusual temples in India

Unusual temples in India

India is a country with diverse religions, cultures and beliefs. There are plenty of religious places or specifically temples in the country where diversified rituals, traditions and sometimes superstitious beliefs are practiced and followed. For some, these places of worship are sacred while for others they are the places where some miracles occur and wishes come true. Here are some of the unusual temples in India which may interest you:

For the bullet lovers and travellers

Om Banna Temple or the Bullet Baba’s Temple in Jodhpur, Rajasthan, is a very unique temple. The deity that is worshipped here is a 350cc Royal Enfield Bullet. The history behind this temple is that a young man named Om Singh Rathore (aka Om Banna) died in an accident here when his bullet motorcycle hit a tree. Many efforts were made by the police to remove the bike from the accident scene, but every time it would reappear. Since then, a temple was built there. It is believed that the spirit of Om Banna protects and helps the distressed travellers.

For the visa seekers – a ticket to the West

There are not one but two places of worship which can fulfill your dream to go abroad. The Visa Baba Temple in Hyderabad and the Shaheed Baba Nihal Singh Gurudwara in Jalandhar are believed to possess powers – even more than the immigration officers – to get you a visa. The Balaji Temple in Chilkur village is thronged by visitors who come here before appearing for a U.S. visa interview and again visit to pay their gratitude after getting one. In the Airplane Temple or the Hawaijahaj Gurudwara, devotees offer toy planes in the hope that they will easily get a visa to the West.

For the Chinese cuisine lovers

Located in Tangra, Kolkata, Chinese Kali Temple is quite unusual and unique. At this temple both the Hindu and Chinese devotees come to pray in equal numbers. According to the residents, the Chinese started worshipping the two sindoor-smeared black stones (which are still present there) which were kept under a tree about 60-years-ago. There is a story how they began to have faith in these stones. It is said that once a 10-year-old Chinese boy fell seriously ill and his parents lay him down near the tree. The boy was miraculously cured. Since then the Chinese community started to respect and believe in this temple. Now, two traditional Kali statues are established there. The most interesting part of the Chinese Kali Temple is the ‘bhog’ or ‘prasad’ which comprise chopsuey, noodles, rice and other vegetable dishes.

For man’s best and loyal friend

When it comes to uniqueness, the Dog Temple in Channapatna in Karnataka stands apart. This unconventional temple was established by a community in order to pay respect to the most faithful creature – the dog. The temple has two idols of dogs and is built next to the temple of the village deity. There is a belief among the villagers that the dog possess the power to stop any wrong doings in the village and keep things right.

For the ailing beings

The Khabees Baba Temple in Sitapur near Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh, is believed to have the powers to cure ailments of the devotees. The temple is dedicated to Saint Khabees Baba and it is said that Khabees Baba used to stay here and drink every evening. He used to cure illness of the people in his inebriated state. Hence, people in large numbers visit this 150-year-old temple. An interesting fact about this temple is that there is no priest or an idol in particular here. In fact, there are two slippers like structures that are considered symbolic to the feet of the saint. The most interesting part of this temple is that the devotees offer liquor and alcohol to the deity here. A portion of liquor around the symbolic feet is accumulated and offered as prasad among the devotees.

For the Dashanan

Ravana, who is considered the devil and the villain in the epic Ramayana, is not considered a devil by all Hindus. There are few temples in India dedicated to this demon. The Dashanan Temple in Kanpur, Uttar Pradesh, and the Ravana Temple in Vidisha, Madhya Pradesh, are some temples. The temple in Kanpur only opens once a year on the occasion of Dussehra. As Ravana was a follower of Lord Shiva, this temple is located next to a Shiva temple. A grand aarti on Dussehra is organised here, which is attended by thousands of devotees. While the country celebrates his death, his devotees celebrate his life as a scholar, philosopher and follower of Lord Shiva. Interestingly, there is a village known as Ravana village where Ravana is worshipped. The first wedding invite in the village is sent to Ravana and no occasion is complete without his blessings. Villagers can be seen chanting “Jai Lankesh… Jai Lankesh” while passing by the temple.

For those who value time

Whether it’s a belief or mere superstition, the devotion of the people lies in their faith! The Brahma Baba Temple in Jaunpur, Uttar Pradesh, experiences strange beliefs. The devotees of this temple offer wall-clocks after their wishes are fulfilled. It is believed that here no wish goes unfulfilled; hence to express their gratitude they offer the clocks. The rituals date back to an incident of a man who wished to learn driving and prayed to God to fulfill his dream. When he became a driver, he offered a wall-clock to God and since then this ritual is being practiced in the Brahma Baba temple. Another interesting fact about the temple is that there is no priest or guard and no one has ever attempted to steal a clock from here.

For the patriots

Every Indian has a feeling of patriotism in his/her heart. The patriotism does not end here with the grand Republic Day celebrations and flying kites on Independence Day. There is a temple in India dedicated to mother India. The Bharat Mata Temple in Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh, is for the devotees of Mother India. There is no deity or idol but a map of India, which has been built from marble and looks like a model. The temple pays homage to those who were a part of the freedom movement and even sacrificed their lives for the independence of the country.

For the game of hide and seek

The game of ‘hide and seek’ is not only confined to children, but, even God plays this game with his devotees. Yes! There is a temple in Gujarat where it happens. The Stambheshwar Mahadev Temple in Kavio Kamboi, Gujarat, is a temple that submerges and then re-emerges from the sea. It is also known as ‘Gupt Tirth”. The150-year-old temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva. It gets submerged in the waters of the Arabian Sea twice a day and then re-emerges. Devotees and tourists visit this temple in large numbers to witness the splendid view of nature. The temple can be visited during the low tide hours.

For the Jerry lovers

In the stories of ‘Tom and Jerry’, we all love Jerry! In India, the Jerry is not loved but worshipped as well. There is a temple in Deshnoke, Rajasthan, known as Karni Mata Temple where rats are worshipped and fed with milk and food by the devotees. It is believed that the rats are the incarnation of Goddess Karni Mata (who is an incarnation of Goddess Durga) and her family members. These rats are known as Kabas and there are about 20,000 rats inside the temple which roam around in its vicinity. If a rat runs across one’s feet, it is considered auspicious.

The list of unusual temples does not end here. There are various temples dedicated to famous personalities as well such as Mahatma Gandhi, Amitabh Bachchan, Sachin Tendulkar, Sonia Gandhi and many more.


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